In '1800 a reply' the various reviews of Blauwdrukken vooreen samenleving [Blueprints for living together] are dealt with. The most interesting criticism was put forward by Frank Ankersmit. According to him, Dutch intellectual culture after 1750 failed to make the transition to intellectual modernity. The Republic's literati remained prisoners of the Cartesian culture that in the 17th century had been responsible for their central position in the cosmopolitan Republic of Letters. This reply contends that the opposition of a unified intellectual Europe on the road to modernity versus a unified Republic that was intellectually backward-looking does not do justice to the cosmopolitan character of European culture. In Blauwdrukken it is argued that in the 18th century differences between national cultures were slight and that European authors (including the Dutch) shared a common vocabulary and a common set of intellectual instruments. What made the Dutch stand out was that their problems differed from those in surrounding aristocratic and monarchical countries. As a result, most solutions debated in these countries did not fit the problems of the Republic. The Republic had to beat out its own path to modernity. It not only did so in the field of intellectual culture, but also in the areas of politics, economics and the arts.